Pause and Live in the Moment

You've heard it in motivational speeches posted on Facebook. You've read it on various articles spreading virally on the internet. And you have that little voice in the back of your head telling you to live in the moment.

But, it's just not that easy. 

Most likely, you won't wake up one morning from a good night's rest and think "Hey, today I'm going to be more mindful and live in the moment". It's going to take adjustments, practice, and a lot of dedication to work towards this journey of a better, more aware, behavior. 

We are constantly overwhelmed with all of life's responsibilities and expectations. Everyday is a new, busy agenda and we constantly just want to look forward to the greener grass that is hopefully in our future. 

If you are constantly wishing for better moments and filling your days with woes and future aspirations, you will never feel satisfaction. You will constantly be on a wild chase for what's "better"—but there will always be something better. Someday warmer, someday less stressful, someday that will be perfect.

It's a lot easier if you stop waiting for these days and recognize that your current days really aren't that bad after all.

So take a breath. Pause. Live in this moment, right now. 

Take a glance away from your screen and observe your surroundings. What do you like about the setting you're in? What does it smell like? What emotions and physical sensations are you feeling right now?

The Oxford Dictionary defines mindfulness as a "mental state achieved by focusing one's awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one's feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, used as a therapeutic technique."

Practicing the technique of mindfulness can help you live in the moment and appreciate all that you have. This will hopefully lead to a happier mindset without the intense desires for the future. 

However, I do want to stress that goals and plans are important. Working towards achievements such as promotions at work, weight loss goals, and academic grades are great aspirations. It's just also important to recognize that the moment you are living in, right now, will never happen again. Now, don't stress about making each moment the best moment of your life, but instead just recognize it. Acknowledge your feelings, what you are grateful for that moment, and your pure presence.

Walk without music blaring in your ears. Sit on a train ride without looking at your phone. Lay outside—as soon as its warm out—and focus on the radiance of sunshine on your bare skin. Drive to your destination without calling a friend (note: you should do this for safety purposes as well).

Who knows? Maybe you'll begin to love the smell of fresh air on a warm, spring day. Maybe you'll find a deep appreciation for the views you pass on your commute home that you never noticed before. Whatever you discover when you recognize your simple moments, acknowledge it. Don't take your life for granted


Live in the moment. 

Sources: 1, 2

Images: 1, 2, 3